nlike other medieval cathedrals that I have seen, which were damaged and rebuilt several times, Chartres cathedral has undergone minor changes. Built in 13th century, the façade we get to see today is almost the same as it was when it was built. There were attempts to destroy it during the French Revolution, but the clever townspeople managed to save it. Prior to WWII, the stained glass paintings were removed and stored safely. The panels are pure visual delight. Its two spires are different (unsymmetrical).
The cathedral was a famous pilgrimage centre because it was believed that the cathedral had the famous relic, the Sancta Camisa, said to be the tunic worn by the Virgin Mary at Christ’s birth. According to legend, the relic was given to the cathedral by Charlemagne who received it as a gift from Emperor Constantine VI during a crusade to Jerusalem. There is no evidence to prove this claim though.
View of the facade from its west end.